Thinking outside the (IKCAC) box

With a recent refresh of the rules for a new 2019 (and future) seasons, an interesting idea was put forward by a friend in An Tir…

During the distance, and close range, there is no issue, you can set up multiple targets (30 and 10 yds) and simply switch targets. The interesting part comes in regard to the ‘advancing round’.

What if there are three targets set up on the range (30, 20, and 10 yds), and in lieu of advancing forward physically, there is a point or post 5 yards behind the (green) shooting line.

How the range might be set up using the post method
How the range might be set up using the post method

After shooting the two rounds at the thirty, you move to the ‘Advancing Round’. Once you get your two shots off at 30, you may advance and shoot at the 20, and repeat. What if instead of advancing, you physically walked/ran to a post behind the line, returned to the line, then shot normally?

How the participant would travel around the post
How the participant would travel around the post

Its an interesting concept, and one that I think would work… However there are some potential issues..

Loaded behind the line:

One should not have a spanned crossbow/bow or arrows/bolts loaded on their bows behind the line for any reason. This is especially true in a mixed line. One can argue that a shoot, solely dedicated to IKCAC, in a safe space, where all participants are aware, this can be done safely, that is not the scope of this post.

I prefer to load as I walk. The same way I perform in combat: always moving, always loading, always hunting. Using this method, one should not be loading while traveling to and from the post, to the line. It creates a safety hazard. What if the prod should break while in action and the bow is pointed ‘down line’ towards other participants? If using the post method, shoot, move to post and back, get back on the line, load and shoot.

Comfort of archers

It is the case that most archery lines are not comfortable, nor familiar with the type of explosive movement that can occur in combat archery. People leisurely shooting their Royal Rounds 10 feet away, may be greatly distracted by someone suddenly running off the line and back.

If one were to attempt this method, make sure all participants are not only aware this is happening, but are ok with it. All the line marshals as well as the MiC should be aware and be assuaged of any safety concerns.

Additionally, make sure the participants of the IKCAC are comfortable with the set up! Some may refer the physical advancement. If it can be run either or both ways, do what is best for the populace and participants!

Elbow room

Space can always be tight, but if there is room to run the IKCAC on its own, that may be a better fit. Though in some cases, a mixed line may be preferable. A mixed line also affords greater visibility to the IKCAC to participants who may not otherwise know it exists. If there is loaner gear, it also makes it easier for someone to walk up and try it out the same we afford in target archery! That said, make sure there is plenty of space for all activities. We want to ensure we are working together!

Conclusion

We all need to make sure the thing we love, is what we do. Talk to your Autocrats, and your Marshals in Charge. It is our job to not only make sure our thing is happening, but that it is advertised, has space, and is done safely!

A new season of the IKCAC is here!

Friends, with a new year brings great promise: to fling more arrows and bolts into a shiny new IKCAC target!

February 1st is the beginning of the new season, so get your targets made and dust those arrows and bolts off! Get them in before December 1st though!

The rules, and target have been reimagined to make the shoot easier, and target easier to construct and set up!

Its as close as you can get to the battlefield without a fighter card!

So what has changed?!

We have added a youth division so our younger friends can compete across the Kingdoms!

We are splitting the adults into two divisions: hand-bow and crossbow.

Plywood Target Example PVC Target ExampleThe target is basically two rectangles. This will make it easier to build! The construction method and materials doesn’t matter, as long as the size is correct and the scores can be easily recorded. But have no fear, if you have the ‘old’ target, you can continue to use it through the 2019 season! We appreciate people may have made on or still have one (as I do!).

The scoring system has been simplified. Now just keep your tally and the math is super easy: 2 or 4 points per.

The IKCAC now lives on it own section on the scores site!


So what does this all mean? The shoot is far more approachable now! We hope to bring you a shoot that is fun, opens doors, and fosters inclusion.

Talk to your local marshals, ask them to include the IKCAC at events and practices! It is a lot easier, and fun to do!

Get out there and get shooting!

Your Faithful Servant and Score-keeper – Cameron de Grey

Get Those Archery Scores In! Royal Rounds, IKAC, and IKCAC

I was inspired today by the words of Excellency Evelynne Merrymet of Black Diamond.

How can we increase participation in the scoring aspect of the game we love?

This touches several areas and instead of responding in an e-mail chain I’d like to share some thoughts if it helps at all…

Availability:

When it comes to scoring shoots, not all practices are built the same. In some cases the practices are small, democratically run, or just not organized. This is not an indictment, rather a reality. Sometimes a practice is simply a group of friends getting together to hang out and fling arrows together. They chat beforehand or generally agree on how it will be run. As someone who runs a `thing`, we should always try to think past ourselves and our friends needs and think about the populace. I may be done shooting Royal Rounds, but it doesn’t mean newcomers are, or seasoned archers for that matter. There are many practices I set up the IKCAC target to have it sit lonely… “I miss being shot on a regular basis,” Syr Rendre du Singe confided to me on a long winter’s night as the wind howled in the lonely pines as vacant as his scoreless soul. You may not even need to set it up physically, but by having it set up, there is no barrier to entry, and it advertises the shoot.

Consistency:

People should know, and it should be advertised that `your` practice includes Royal RoundsIKAC, SSAC, etc… Not everyone may participate, and lord knows I’ve set up IKCAC and Royal Rounds many times they were never scored. But if people know they want to score and they can depend on the availability, they may come. Set up the targets every time. You may not shoot a Royal Round every time, but it will be ready to go when anyone else is. Part of the beauty of using the 60cm FITA targets is that they are easy to put up, and ready for whatever game you may wish to play.

Training:

How can we better lay the groundworks for submitting scores? Perhaps having a sign in at practice. Get people used to the idea of ‘low barrier’ paperwork. Do they have to sign in? This may depend on the Kingdom, but in my case, not a requirement. But it would be nice to know who showed up, especially as it relates to newcomers and Seneschals. Remember that practices can be open and one need not be a SCA member to participate. This can be an opportunity to better get to know someone. Always have scoring sheets and a clipboard available. Plenty of pencils. A quick trip to an Office Depot will have you set up for years. Buy two sets, and entrust a few key people with the forms so no matter what, someone can always be there with score sheets. Practice speed rounds or at various ranges to get people used to the procedures of scoring. This can also be a way to get people to break out of their ‘but I can’t hit a target at 40 yards’ line of thinking.

Fun:

Challenge yourself and others to score with varying equipment. I have been shooting crossbow almost exclusively for a long time (training for combat archery went to laziness ;p), but what about a horse-bow? Longbow? Challenge others to use new equipment and broaden their horizons. Challenge yourself! Use the Royal Rounds score as a measure of comparison between the various equipment options. Advertise, set up, and shoot SSAC targets! These change over time and can offer a sense newness and or competition. Challenge others to shoot a Royal Round even if it isn’t submitted. These scores can be, and are to many, a useful tool in gauging their performance.

There is more Im sure and I am NOT the last word, or the smartest but I hope to start and add to the conversations!